This presentation will sets its sights on the potentialities to create new interpretations of tourism and hospitality doings in the context of transmodernity as an emerging and significant paradigm shift that signals a major global change in human consciousness. In doing so, two key aspects will be covered. Firstly, I will critically reflect on the postmodern deconstruction process which reduced modernity to intellectual rubble and an anarchic world where everyone’s story is equally compelling; and will provide the main philosophical tenets of transmodernity as a fresh and promising move in the new era of humanity. Secondly, I will show that tourism and hospitality, in its deep and ubiquitous embeddness in our global culture and economy, is one of the most visible manifestations that signal the emerging transmodern world. In consequence, I will argue that this realisation gives us an enormous political weight to point to the agency and authority of tourism to possibly change the world to the better and assist it in its longings for interconnectedness and communion. As Hollinshead points out in his invitation to both tourism scholars and tourism industry to recognize ‘how tourism is indeed potentially connected to all of our industries, to all of our civilities, and to all of our other aspirations’ (2002:11). In responding so, I will offer possibilities of hope for tourism and hospitality (studies) to be remade and to re-make the world.
This paper is based on the forthcoming chapter Ateljevic, I. (2009) Transmodernity- remaking our (tourism) world? in J. Tribe (ed) Philosophical Issues in Tourism: Truth, Beauty and Virtue. Clevedon: Channel View .
Irena Ateljevic received her doctoral degree in human geography in 1998 at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. She is currently positioned within the Socio-Spatial Analysis Group at Wageningen University, Netherlands. Interested in human development potential she explores tourism as a powerful agent of socio-economic and cultural change with the particular focus on issues of women empowerment and leadership. She is a co-founder of the Critical Tourism Studies network (CTS) through which she has been promoting the epistemological issues of reflexivity in the production of tourism knowledge. The recent titles of her two co-edited books are Gender, Tourism and Embodiment (2007) and The Critical Turn in Tourism Studies: Exploring Innovative Methodologies (2007).